Action Plan for Australian Marsupials and Monotremes

Caution: archived content

This content may have been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.

Wildlife Australia, December 1996
ISBN 0 6422 1395 X

Recovery Outline - Nabarlek

Taxon Summary

Nabarlek (NW NT)

1 Family: Macropodidae

2 Scientific name: Petrogale concinna concinna Gould, 1842

3 Common name: Nabarlek (NW NT)

4 Conservation status: Lower Risk (near threatened): a, c

5 Past range and abundance:

Sandstone and granite ranges of north-western NT south-west to the Victoria River and from the central north coast of Arnhem Land (a record from Millingimbi Island (Parker 1973) refers to an animal transported there as a pet (I. Morris pers. comm. to J. Woinarski). In the upper Mary, Dahl (1926) considered it to occur "in enormous numbers" in the 1890s, though elsewhere it was generally considered rare (Dahl 1897).

6 Present range and abundance:

ecent surveys have failed to relocate populations in the Litchfield NP area
Recent surveys have failed to relocate populations in the Litchfield NP area and in parts of the upper Mary (Sanson et al. 1985), though it appears still common at other sites (e.g., Mt Borradaile, parts of Kakadu NP, Hayes Creek: Churchill in press). Apparently disappeared from the south-western parts of its former range.

7 Habitat:

Sandstone and granite hills and escarpments. No apparent association with vegetation features, although Sanson et al. (1983) considered that it may occur particularly where rock outcrops neighbour seasonally-inundated black-soil plains (because of the significance of sedges in the diet).

8 Current threats:

Habitat change through altered fire regimes, feral cats.

9 Recommended actions:

9.1 Examine ecology at one or more populations.

9.2 Monitor known populations.

9.3 Undertake surveys of sites where decline has occurred (e.g., western Top End, upper Mary and upper Daly Rivers, Ord and Victoria River districts.

9.4 Manage fire at colony sites.

References:

Churchill S. in press. Habitat use, distribution and conservation status of the Nabarlek, Petrogale concinna, in the Northern Territory. Australian Mammalogy.

Dahl K. 1926. Biological notes on north Australian mammals. The Zoologist 671, 190-216.

Dahl K. 1926. In Savage Australia. Philip Allan, London.

Parker S.A. 1973. An annotated checklist of the native land mammals of the Northern Territory. Records of the South Australian Museum 16, 1-57.

Sanson G.D., Nelson J.E. and Fell P. 1985. Ecology of Peradorcas concinna in Arnhemland in a Wet and a Dry season. Proceedings of the Ecological Society of Australia 13, 65-72.


Taxon Summary

Nabarlek (NW Kimberley)

1 Family: Macropodidae

2 Scientific name: Petrogale concinna monastria Thomas, 1926

3 Common name: Nabarlek (NW Kimberley)

4 Conservation status: Lower Risk (near threatened): b

5 Past range and abundance:

North-west Kimberley: Yampi Peninsula north to Kalumburu. No measures of abundance. Occurs on Long (1 356 ha) and Hidden (1 974 ha) Islands in the Buccaneer Archipelago, on Augustus (19 023 ha) and possibly Darcy (4 925 ha) Islands in the Bonaparte Archipelago and on Borda Island (728 ha) in Admiralty Gulf.

6 Present range and abundance:

Reasonably abundant on smaller islands

Reasonably abundant on smaller islands. Very few records on mainland. Recorded at Napier-Broome Bay (1911), Kunmunya (1936), Wotjulum (Yampi Peninsula) (1954 and 1956), Kalumburu (1960), Mitchell Plateau (1963, but not during a major survey in 1976), and Prince Regent Nature Reserve (1974).

7 Habitat:

Rock-piles, screes. Widespread on islands but apparently has a very restricted and scattered distribution on the mainland.

8 Current threats:

No information. Feral cats occur throughout its mainland range and may be affecting abundance and causing a decline in range. Changed fire regimes since Aborigines moved to settlements may also be affecting it.

9 Recommended actions:

9.1 Survey on mainland to clarify distribution and abundance.

9.2 Monitor island populations every decade or so.

References:

Burbidge A.A. and McKenzie N.L. (Eds) 1978. The islands of the North-west Kimberley Western Australia. Wildlife Research Bulletin of Western Australia No. 7, 1-47. Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Perth.

Miles J.M. and Burbidge A.A. (Eds) 1975. A biological survey of the Prince Regent River Reserve, North-west Kimberley, Western Australia. Wildlife Research Bulletin of Western Australia No. 3, 1-114. Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Perth.


Taxon Summary

Mt Claro Rock-wallaby

1 Family: Macropodidae

2 Scientific name: Petrogale sharmani Eldridge and Close, 1992

3 Common name: Mt Claro Rock-wallaby

4 Conservation status: Lower Risk (near threatened): b, d

5 Past range and abundance:

Restricted to the vicinity of the Seaview and Coane Ranges west of Ingham in north-east Qld, an area of about 2000 km2. Common at some localities.

6 Present range and abundance:

Reasonably abundant on smaller islands As above.

7 Habitat:

Rocky outcrops, boulder piles, gorges, cliff lines and rocky slopes.

8 Current threats:

No decline observed, but extremely restricted distribution makes this species vulnerable to habitat loss and degradation and/or chance events. Threats include habitat loss for development, and competition from domestic and wild introduced herbivores. Vulnerable to possible effects of any climate change which favours more populous species of rock-wallabies with adjacent ranges.

9 Recommended actions:

9.1 Survey to determine distribution and status across range. This species may also occur on Hinchinbrook Island.

9.2 Identify populations for regular monitoring.

9.3 Conduct research aimed at understanding species biology and ecology, especially to determine its interaction with introduced herbivores.

References:

Eldridge M.D.B. and Close R.L. 1992. Taxonomy of Rock-wallabies, Petrogale (Marsupalia: Macropodidae). I. A revision of the eastern Petrogale with the description of three new species. Australian Journal of Zoology 40, 605-625.

 

Taxon Summary

Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby (Qld)

1 Family: Macropodidae

2 Scientific name: Petrogale xanthopus celeris Le Souef, 1924

3 Common name: Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby (Qld)

4 Conservation status: Lower Risk (near threatened): a, c

5 Past range and abundance:

South-west Queensland, extending south of the current area of distribution to the southern part of the Grey Range.

6 Present range and abundance:

Known from 44 sites within an area 250 x 160 km between Adavale, Blackall and Jundah Known from 44 sites within an area 250 x 160 km between Adavale, Blackall and Jundah (Gordon et al. 1993). Includes Idalia, Hell Hole, Mariala and Barcoo NPs.

7 Habitat:

Upper slopes, cliff lines and flat tops of low tablelands and hills, with gradients of up to 60% and vegetation of low Acacia woodland or shrubland.

8 Current threats:

Predation by foxes and competition with domestic and wild introduced herbivores (particularly goats, rabbits and sheep). Increased competition with native herbivores, particularly the Euro Macropus robustus, as a result of improved conditions for the latter species after land clearing and pasture improvement in surrounding foothills. Clearing of mulga and other vegetation near cliff lines may threaten the rock-wallabies.

9 Recommended actions:

9.1 Continue control of goats.

9.2 Control foxes around some populations and monitor rock-wallaby numbers in fox controlled and non-fox controlled areas.

9.3 Establish a regular monitoring program and determine population trends.

9.4 Research into limiting factors other than foxes. A more accurate determination of threatening factors and management requirements is needed.

9.5 Study of genetics of wild and captive populations under way (Lisa Pope).

9.6 Locate and map marginal populations and identify sink populations for long-term monitoring of population density and habitat quality changes.

References:

Gordon G., McRae P., Lim L., Reimer D. and Porter G. 1993. The conservation status of the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby in Queensland. Oryx 27, 159-168.

Lim L., Sheppard N., Smith P. and Smith J. 1992. The biology and management of the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby (Petrogale xanthopus) in NSW. NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service Species Management Report No. 10. National Parks and Wildlife Service, Sydney.

 

Taxon Summary

Southern Common Cuscus

1 Family: Phalangeridae

2 Scientific name: Phalanger intercastellanus Thomas, 1895

3 Common name: Southern Common Cuscus

4 Conservation status: Lower Risk (near threatened): b

5 Past range and abundance:

The Australian population of this species was discovered in 1931/2 in the McIlwraith Range on Cape York Peninsula (Tate 1948).

6 Present range and abundance:

Restricted to the McIlwraith Range/Iron Range block of rainforest on the eastern seaboard of Cape York Peninsula

Restricted to the McIlwraith Range/Iron Range block of rainforest on the eastern seaboard of Cape York Peninsula (Winter et al. 1991, Winter and Leung 1995). There is no evidence to suggest that its range has either contracted or expanded since the arrival of Europeans in Australia. Spotlight transects indicate low density, on average one individual is seen for every 2.5 hours of spotlighting. This is roughly equivalent to one individual for every six hectares, and gives a total population estimate around 31 500 individuals.

7 Habitat:

Rainforest specialist. Confined to semi-deciduous mesophyll vine forest, notophyll vine forest and evergreen notophyll vine forest. It does not extend more than a few kilometres along riparian strips away from larger areas of rainforest (Winter and Leung 1995).

8 Current threats:

Potential threats are hunting and clearing of habitat. Currently both are minimal but with improved vehicular access and the use of rifles and spotlights, hunting is a potential threat in some areas. Minimal clearing of habitat has taken place (approximately 0.1%) and large scale clearing of habitat is not envisaged in the near future.

9 Recommended actions:

An intensive ecological study of the habitat requirements of the species. Present knowledge of the species is based on observations made during general fauna surveys and anecdotal accounts.

References:

Tate G.H.H. 1948. Results of the Archbold Expeditions. No. 60: Studies in the Peramelidae (Marsupalia). Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 92, 313-346.

Winter J.W. and Leung L.K.-P. 1995. Southern Common Cuscus Phalanger intercastellanus Thomas, 1895. Pp. 268-270 in R. Strahan (Ed.). The Mammals of Australia. Reed Books, Chatswood, NSW.

Winter J.W., Atherton R.G., Bell F.C. and Pahl L.I. 1991. Distributions of selected north-eastern Australian rainforest animals. Pp. 155-175 in G. Werren and P. Kershaw (Eds). The Rainforest Legacy: Australian National Rainforest Study. Volume 2 - Flora and Fauna of the Rainforests. Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra.

 

Taxon Summary

Common Brushtail Possum (SW mainland)

1 Family: Phalangeridae

2 Scientific name: Trichosurus vulpecula hypoleucus (Wagner, 1855)

3 Common name: Common Brushtail Possum (SW mainland)

4 Conservation status: Lower Risk (near threatened): a

5 Past range and abundance:

Throughout the south-west of WA from the mid-west coast to east of Esperance and as far inland as Laverton. Formerly abundant and harvested for skins in the forests and Wheatbelt in the early 1900s.

6 Present range and abundance:

Patchy distribution throughout south-west Jarrah and Karri forests" /> Patchy distribution throughout south-west Jarrah and Karri forests, coastal woodlands and thickets, Wheatbelt Wandoo (at least as far east as Dragon Rocks NR) and Salmon Gum woodlands. Maximum abundances of 0.4-0.5/ha in Jarrah forest and Wheatbelt woodlands.

7 Habitat:

Forest and woodlands that provide adequate number and quality of refuge hollows. Most refuges are in mature eucalypt trees >70 cm diameter, however ground refuge sites (hollow logs and burrows) are sometimes used in the presence of fox control.

8 Current threats:

Fox predation, and loss of suitable refuge sites.

9 Recommended actions:

9.1 Monitor populations at sites within the Jarrah forest as part of ongoing research into impacts of timber harvesting and prescribed burning.

9.2 Monitor populations at woodland sites as part of threatened species reintroduction programs and broad scale fox control programs.

References:

Kerle J.A. 1984. Variation in the ecology of Trichosurus: its adaptive significance. Pp. 115-128 in A.P. Smith and I.D. Hume (Eds) Possums and Gliders, Australian Mammal Society, Sydney.

Kerle J.A., McKay G.M. and Sharman G.B. 1991. A systematic analysis of the Brushtail Possum Trichosurus vulpecula (Kerr 1792) (Marsupalia: Phalangeridae). Australian Journal of Zoology 39, 313-331.

Shortridge G.C. 1909. An account of the geographical distribution of the marsupials and monotremes of south west Australia. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1909, 803-847.

 

Taxon Summary

Ilangnalya

1 Family: Phalangeridae

2 Scientific name: Wyulda squamicaudata Alexander, 1919

3 Common name: Ilangnalya, Scaly-tailed Possum

4 Conservation status: Lower Risk (near threatened): b

5 Past range and abundance:

Apart from the type specimen, which came from Violet Valley in the east Kimberley, all records are from the high rainfall, near-coastal north-west Kimberley of WA between Yampi Peninsula and Kalumburu. Occurs on Bigge and Boongaree Islands. No data on abundance.

6 Present range and abundance:

Not recorded in the east Kimberley since 1917 Not recorded in the east Kimberley since 1917. Otherwise not known to be different from past range. No data on abundance.

7 Habitat:

Woodlands on rugged sandstone. Shelters mainly in rock piles and feeds in trees.

8 Current threats:

Not known.

9 Recommended actions:

9.1 Monitor abundance at selected sites throughout range, including Bigge Island.

9.2 Conduct research aimed at understanding the biology, ecology, conservation status and requirements.

References:

Burbidge A.A. 1995. Scaly-tailed Possum Wyulda squamicaudata. Pp. 276-277 in R. Strahan (Ed.) The Mammals of Australia. Reed Books, Chatswood, NSW.